Max Payne, max fidelity
Remedy, the studio behind the first two Max Payne games, are remaking both of them in their in-house engine, Northlight.
According to a blog post from the company, Remedy are remaking the games in a “development agreement with Rockstar Games”. They go on to clarify that Rockstar will be financing the games’ development.
In this agreement, Remedy will get royalty payments once Rockstar recoups the costs for development, marketing, distribution and publishing.
The post ends with Remedy saying that the game is in the concept development stage at the moment.
An iconically Payne-ful history
The first Max Payne released in 2001 and has since become an iconic staple of gaming. Gameplay-wise, the game is remembered for the bullet-time system which let players slow down time as they dive and shoot around enemies.
Story-wise, many praise the atmosphere, tone, and writing of the original games. This praise is more-so of the sequel Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne which went for a more complex story than the first’s relatively simple revenge plot.
The series’ last entry was Max Payne 3, released in 2012 and made primarily by Rockstar Studios with Remedy being consultants in the final stages of development. The game has seen mixed opinions. Some criticised how the tone and style differed from previous entries, while others have praised its action gameplay.
Meanwhile, Remedy have made critically acclaimed games like Alan Wake and Control, with Alan Wake getting a remaster recently. Both these games also have sequels promised. Alan Wake II is currently planned for 2023 and Control 2 is in early development at the time of writing.
Northlight, Remedy’s narrative engine
Northlight, the engine Remedy are planning to use for these remakes, was first used in Quantum Break. Remedy built this engine on top of the one they were using for a now-canned Alan Wake 2. The game had an internal prototype in 2010 but never made it to release.
Remedy built the engine with narrative design in mind. Creative director and face of Max Payne Sam Lake once said in an interview that the studio’s early games had a “big focus” on story which is why they geared the engine towards storytelling.
Being in such early development, however, it’ll no doubt be a while before we get a concrete release date for the Max Payne remakes.
Are you looking forward to these remakes? How do you think Max Payne should be remade? Let us know in the comments below! Or check out our article on secrets in Red Dead Redemption 2 for more Rockstar content.
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